Egyptian football legend and Liverpool striker Mohamed Salah made a dream for a Syrian refugee kid come true when he met him during the Reds’ pre-season tour in the United States.
Ammar Halabi, 16, a muscular dystrophy patient, fled to the States with his family as refugees two years ago.
Liverpool’s website published a video for the meeting between Salah and Halabi’s family.
The meeting was arranged by Make-A-Wish Foundation, a non-profit organization founded in the United States whose mission is to fulfill wishes for children with serious illnesses.
“Ammar is a smart kid. He loves to play and he loves sleeping. He’s shy but he loves school and football. Ammar has a health problem, he doesn’t get bigger like other kids and he can’t play soccer. It’s a problem with his entire body, muscular dystrophy,” Ammar’s mother Radwa said.
“He watches matches and it’s his dream to meet a player. The doctor called me and I told her Ammar wanted to meet Mohamed Salah. The doctor told us it would be tough but she’d try. When they called to tell us it was happening and he was going to meet Salah, Ammar was so happy, really excited. His happiness didn’t compare to anything,” she said.
For his part, Ammar expressed his admiration to the Egyptian international. “Everybody loves Salah and I want to be like him. He is a great person,” he said.
The football star handed over a signed shirt and posed for pictures with Ammar, his brothers and parents.
Before leaving, Salah sat down to have a chat with the family, asking about how long they had been in the United States.
Ammar, overjoyed at having his dream come true, said that he wished it could have lasted even longer.
The Make-A-Wish Foundation is one of the most famous charities in the United States, and has allowed many sick children to meet their favorite stars. John Cena, the professional wrestling champion, currently holds the record for making the most wishes come true at around 500 children.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm